Armenia’s press provides an extensive coverage to the Monday rally of opposition leader Levon Ter-Petrosian’s Armenian National Congress, presenting assessments and commentaries from different perspectives.
“Aravot” editorializes: “The opposition has been holding rallies for 17 years, but regardless of its leaders, the points of criticism remain the same.”
The daily’s editor sums up these points to the following: “a) The authorities are criminal and anti-people (which is true in all cases). b) They forget the Genocide and ‘sell’ Nagorno-Karabakh (which is a lie).” “So, on the one hand during all 17 years all authorities were corrupt and tended to restrict people’s rights, on the other hand, no leadership has been “a betrayer of the nation).”
“Hayots Ashkhar” writes: “There has never been a sadder, duller and more colorless rally than the one staged by the opposition on Monday evening… It was clear that the revolutionary vigor among the opposition ranks had subsided.”
“It was a dissatisfying experience for the mass that expects action from every rally. Nothing happened again this time,” writes “Hraparak”, adding: “No march followed yesterday’s rally. Meanwhile, marches are the most inspiring and awaited part of it.”
“Haykakan Zhamanak” suggests that the municipality of Yerevan had decided to authorize the Monday rally of the opposition basing on some ‘calculations’: “September 15 in Armenia was officially a day-off, a church day for remembering the dead. According to the calculations of [President] Serzh Sarkisian and his team, that already was to be a real obstacle to the holding of the rally as it was expected to substantially reduce its attendance.”
“The number of deployed police at the rally was also unprecedented,” the pro-opposition daily writes. “The plan of the authorities was to deliver a serious blow to the opposition movement with the municipally authorized September 15 rally. A few thousand police were to have attacked participants of what they expected would be a spontaneous [unauthorized] march and a big clash was thus ‘planned’. However, this tremendous program did not work and Serzh Sarkisian made a mistake again. The leaders of the popular movement did not gift a ‘big clash’ to him.”
“Chorrord Ishkhanutyun” opines that the rally on September 15 was an exception in one aspect. After the rally, the paper writes, people were not enthused but rather appeared to be making a serious analysis of the situation.